Homeless Homeowner – the law supports lawlessness

Homeless Homeowner – the law supports lawlessness

7:33 AM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago 64

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In an attempt to keep this brief, I have been renting my flat to my current tenants for almost 4 years. Last year I informed them that I will be needing the property. Their tenancy agreement was renewed but only for 6 months to which they agreed was enough time to sort out accommodation. The lines of communication have always been good and open with my tenants so you can imagine my shock and horror when on the day they were supposed to vacate the property and I move back in, they refuse to go. The irony is, they actually called the police and were told to leave the property and their tenancy was up. They then produced a council doc and the police informed me that I will need to legally evict them. Homeless Homeowner - the law supports lawlessness

Now, I’m not a property mogul, this was my home that was rented due to personal reasons. I had no idea of the procedure or how long the process will take. So here’s my dilemma; they are refusing to go, as they did not communicate with me and lead me to believe all is well, I now have no accommodation. I am 6 months pregnant and sleeping on my brothers sofa until I get advice as I’m told I can’t actually do anything.

I’m perplexed as I’m told these 2 young, able bodied individuals in full time employment do not have to pay me rent and theres nothing I can do about it. I’ve asked the council if they can help me since they are the ones advising people to stay on in other people’s properties..but as expected they don’t really care, it’s my problem.

Can anyone offer any advice? Paying rent and a mortgage while my tenants sit in my property rent free leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I’m so worried as I’m effectively homeless and see no resolution by the time my baby arrives! Just doesn’t make any sense to me…being a homeless homeowner is like being a starving baker, makes no sense at all.

All I’ve found is advice and guidance for tenants, where is the advice and help for gullible landlords like me??


Ms Bee Ms Bee

15:03 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Hello all, I'm the lady that posted the initial issue, just to address a few of your points. While I appreciate there are two sides to every story I suggest you attempt to generalise my story.

Neil Hewitt, I appreciate your sentiments but that is your experience. Yes I am one of the many that did not know the procedures of renting a property. Due to personal reasons, including a marriage breakdown and the murder of my neighbours I was unable to stay in my property and sought to rent it out not just to help financially but to also ensure the place was occupied (as I had suffered to break ins when it wasn't). So yes, I take full responsibility for not researching the correct procedures etc.

As mentioned, I've rented to these people for almost 4 years, we've never had a problem, they even attended a family function of mine. My point is, my tenants were well aware that I was pregnant and needed my flat back, if they had issues finding somewhere or any problems the fact that they told me this on the morning I'm to move back in is unacceptable. I did not 'spring' a section 21 on them, I didn't even know what that was, this is what I've been advised by the council to do.

And Industry Observer, as I've already taken responsibility for the informality of my arrangements with this situation I will say you are extremely misguided if you believe able bodied people will not attempt to use the system for their gain. My tenants were given an agreement for 6 months, they are both professionals..what reason is there for them to hand the police this council doc, which in fact was only a piece of paper entitled 'the eviction procedure'.

Had my tenants communicated with me I could have sought resolution. You both appear quite quick to judge, yet the fact that this will cost me a lot of money, the fact that at present I have no where to bring my child doesn't actually are non factors. I am not a property mogul or expert, I'm a young woman who was in a desperate situation and rented my home.

I can also assure you that when the police entered the property they informed my tenants they had to leave until my tenants presented the council doc. Wether you wish to depict me as the evil landlord is neither here nor there.

But to agree with previous comments, there are 2 sides to a story and sometimes 3...don't be so quick to sit in judgement

If anyone can offer any constructive advice it will be greatly appreciated.

Ray Davison

15:09 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "14/02/2014 - 14:56":

Hi Mark,
I do agree with you that some form of intial training should be undertaken by new landlords and yes even some mandatory initial 'Induction' if you like. However if they use a professional agent (Who has undergone at least whatever mandatory training is decreed because many of them have none whatsoever) then there is no reason for the landlord to be forced to undergo the training even if were useful for them to do so. After all you don't have to go on an accountancy course to use a qualified accountant (Although it may well serve you well to do so).

Ms Bee Ms Bee

15:11 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

And I agree with Mark re the landlord accreditation, as mentioned I rented in haste and was stupidly confident that my tenants would stick to their side of the contract. I just wanted to share this as I know many people, especially in these times of financial hardship may make the same mistakes I have and suffer greatly for it.

Thank you for the advice and comments, at least I know where I stand now which is much more than I did yesterday, having received conflicting advice from both the council and CAB

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

15:11 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ms Bee Ms Bee" at "14/02/2014 - 15:03":

Have a look at Ray's post, that's probably the most constructive advice so far - see >>> http://www.property118.com/homeless-homeowner-the-law-supports-lawlessness/63713/comment-page-3/#comment-37625

The Police generally don't have a clue about Landlord and Tenant law so I can totally believe the story you are telling me. I have actually witnessed police assisting with an illegal eviction with my own eyes, this was after they were called by an alarmed tenant who was getting thrown out for having too many late night garden parties and annoying the neighbours. The landlord hadn't even served notice, never mind obtained a possession order!

Jeremy Smith

15:13 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mandy Thomson" at "14/02/2014 - 13:58":

Ha Ha....

I'll have to book my transplant right away then !! 🙂
...a wait of only 6 months I would think, alot less than waiting for a council house !! 😉

Jeremy Smith

15:36 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ms Bee Ms Bee" at "14/02/2014 - 15:03":

Hi Ms B B,

I, just like Mark, also started my landlord life renting out my home, with complete cluelessness, if that's a word!

My suggestion is more or less as I said before, but there is so much already posted, it's probably got lost!...

Since the deposit wasn't protected, and some of the deposit is now for the next rent, they have obviously now agreed to continue paying, I would be very inclined to try to keep them on as tenants (sometimes better the devil you know), which will give you a steady income, and find another place for yourself.
You might find a friend where you can stay who would like to share her house, and that'll be some support for when the baby comes.

This way, you can re-issue a NEW tenancy agreement, and if you have some deposit left, you might protect that, and do all the other things, eg PI, new inventory, etc.
This will show your tenant that you are both starting afresh.
I can see they've dumped on you, but sometimes we have to look past misdemeanours.
With a new Tenancy Agreement, and protected deposit, they may well forget all about the original TA in the future and get on a better relationship with each other, like you had before.

-Alternatively, it could take up to 6 months of no rent before you finally get rid of them, and 6 years of wondering if they are going to come back and sue you for 3xrent.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

15:39 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ray Davison" at "14/02/2014 - 15:09":

Hi Ray

I disagree.

Letting Agents, no matter how qualified, act for landlords. Many of their landlord clients are totally clueless they will argue with their agents until they are blue in the face that day is night on many occasions, especially if it means them having to put their hands in their pockets to pay for essential repairs etc.

Ray Davison

16:04 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "14/02/2014 - 15:39":

I know where you are coming from Mark as we manage a few properties for other landlords (Word of mouth mainly) and we refuse to deal with either poor properties or landlords who don't want to do the job properly. Having said that you are correct, few of them ever want to spend any money on the properties and it can be a nightmare being stuck in the middle. However if a landlord had the choice of be trained themselves or accept the advice of their agent then it would be akin to disagreeing with your accountant or solicitor. Most would then ultimately do what was required instead of having to go down the training route themselves as that would be oh so difficult for them. Give them the option I would say.

Your route would certainly help but I do think that would just open the door to blanket landlord licencing.

Ms Bee Ms Bee

22:08 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Jeremy Smith" at "14/02/2014 - 15:36":

Thanks jeremy, the issue I have is financial. Trying to pay rent and pay a mortgage just is not an option for me. I foolishly allowed them to use the deposit as last months rent but as they have not moved out I believe that's all void. I don't even have the £700 to offer them (even the thought of that makes me feel ill). These people are not victims.

My partner and I do not make a lot of money, we ourselves were renting. The whole point of ending the tenancy was to regain security and when I found out I was expecting, it was security for my child. My tenancy ended on 10th of feb and the council said (and this is the truth) that we were silly for leaving and that we should have waited to get evicted also. This just baffles me.

I plan to take your advice, as well as Marks in terms of having a discussion with them. Does that mean the only way around this deposit issue is by paying them an additional £700...even though they have technically received their full deposit back?

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

22:31 PM, 14th February 2014, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ms Bee Ms Bee" at "14/02/2014 - 22:08":

If you can get them to sign something which says they want you to use their deposit to cover this months rent that will count as if you have refunded the deposit and can then serve a section 21 notice. You are still liable for a potential fine of three times rent for failing to protect the deposit within 30 days of first receiving it but that's a separate issue and you may get away with it if your tenants don't make a claim in the next 6 years.

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